Battle Chef Brigade is like next-level farm-to-table cooking. You play a chef in a culinary competition where you slay monsters, hack them up for ingredients, and solve puzzles in the kitchen to create succulent dishes. Part puzzler and part action-platformer, it’s the third title from Trinket Studios. Publisher Adult Swim Games will serve it up on PC and the Nintendo Switch on November 20 for $20.
The surreal premise makes sense in the fantasy world Victusia. You can choose to play the single-player campaign as either Mina or Thrash, who are both trying to win a tournament that looks like a magical version of Iron Chef. When you’re hunting and brawling with beasties, you’ll traverse dark dungeons, lush forests, and islands in the sky. Back at the stove, the main mechanic seems to be something more akin to a match-3 game as you cook up dragon hearts and assemble dishes for the judges to taste.
The title’s been cooking for over three years now. Trinket raised over $100,000 on Kickstarter for Battle Chef Brigade back in 2014. It’s taken so long to release partly because of the art, which was hand drawn. It’s got a lovely aesthetic with soft pastel colors in the background. The vistas and overall look draw inspiration from Studio Ghibli and Studio Trigger (Kill la Kill, Little Witch Academia), especially the mouthwatering animated dishes.
“Cooking competition TV shows, especially a certain Japanese one, inspired our original concept,” said Trinket cofounder Tom Eastman in an email to GamesBeat. “We quickly blended in a fantasy world, though, to encourage improvisational cooking instead of recipe-following. The art style is inspired by traditional anime — we wanted to make a colorful, charming world full of interesting characters.”
Eastman says that the varied gameplay makes Battle Chef Brigade an ideal fit for a hybrid home/handheld console like the Switch.
“Battle Chef Brigade has a lot of different types of gameplay that take different amounts of time, which is perfect for the versatile nature of the Switch,” said Eastman. “Players can earn money doing hunts in Brigade Town while on a bus and then challenge a chef to a Cooking Duel back at home on their TV!”